Mayor: Sewer debate is doing real damage to Hamilton County

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The debate over septic tanks and sewer facilities in eastern Hamilton County may make a lot of people’s eyes glaze over.

But today the topic got heated again.

However, this time it wasn’t neighbors complaining about what’s moving into their backyard.

This time, it was the county mayor saying that the politics is beginning to really hurt the county.

Ashley Henderson has the story.

MAYOR JIM COPPINGER , HAMILTON COUNTY “WWTA is going to have to borrow money, WWTA is going to be talking about bonds in the future, and some other things that are really important to move forward with WWTA, and every comment that’s made about, selling, or every comment that’s made about consolidating and them going away, is hurting their chances, every, single, day.”

The commission has voted not to put a treatment facility near Hunter road where the WWTA had planned for years to build. Since then, Mayor Coppinger has proposed spending an additional 25 million dollars to relocate that facility. That would require a tax increase.

COMMISSIONER TIM BOYD “Of the 4 big counties …5 big counties of Tennessee…Hamilton county is the only county with one treatment plant operating… long term, this county needs to be seriously considering multiple wastewater treatment plants.

Coppinger says that something would have to be done to accommodate future growth for the county, because home construction in the northeast part of the county is at a standstill. That’s because of a lack of sewage treatment facilities. But the mayor wanted to move past that stalemate.

MAYOR JIM COPPINGER “Again I want to re-direct our focus on the budget. Let WWTA , and Chattanooga ..whoever else wants to take about sewage and wasterwater…nothing is going to happen between now and July 1st… other than we really need to get focused on what we’re doing here.”

In other business, Commissioners followed the lead of the Chattanooga city council last night when they approved amending and restating the existing PILOT agreement, on behalf of Gestamp.

The commission also approved the possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages during private events at Chester Frost.

In downtown Chattanooga, Ashley Henderson, News 12 Now.

Categories: Featured, Government & Politics, Hamilton County, Local News

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